08.05.2017 - And still it exists: the faulty German Christmas stamp of 2016

(aw/wm) For weeks and months it has been drawing the attention of philatelists, especially those collecting Germany: a never issued stamp (‘non-émis’) that should have celebrated Christmas 2016. The stamp showed the text ‘Frohe Weihnachten’ (‘Merry Christmas’) in a number of languages, one of them being Dutch. Before the stamp could be issued on its planned date (2 November 2016) it was discovered that the Dutch word for Christmas, ‘Kerstfeest’, lacked an ‘e’. The German post instructed all post offices and other places where the stamp should have been sold to return the faulty stamps. At first, it seemed no copies of the ‘wrong stamp’ had escaped the return order of the German post. But no, on eBay a used copy of the stamp surfaced and was put up for sale. It obliged the Michel catalogue to adorn the never issued stamp with the catalogue number XX.
And the story is not over yet: another used copy will soon be auctioned. It will come under the gavel during the upcoming e@auction of the German firm Ulrich Felzmann of Düsseldorf on 12 May 2017. And even better: Felzmann also offers a complete mini-sheet containing ten faulty stamps during the same auction.
The starting prices of the two lots are respectively 900 Euros for the single (used) stamp and 5.000 Euros for the complete sheet of ten. It is unsure whether the lots will yield these amounts. There is always the possibility that the hammer will fall at much higher prices, certainly when one keeps the going prices for other German ‘non-émis’ (like the ‘Red Adenauer’, the ‘Gscheidle Olympic Games error’ and the ‘Smoking Audrey Hepburn’ in mind.